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RSL beats New York Red Bulls, 1-0, on Rusnak penalty

It was a recovery win for RSL as they vanquished Mike Petke’s former team.

MLS: New York Red Bulls at Real Salt Lake Rob Gray-USA TODAY Sports

Only a week after their historic home opener loss, Real Salt Lake managed a 1-0 win over coach Mike Petke’s former side, New York Red Bylks,

With only a penalty separating the two sides, RSL’s win was, on paper, not a beautiful one. The pace of play was decidedly in New York’s favor, the opportunities seemed to come for the opposition a little more cleanly, and RSL just couldn’t seem to put their shots away.

In a slightly confusing moment, referee Ted Unkel signaled for a penalty, then signaled for video review, then signaled for a penalty in short order — though that may have just been having received word from a fifth official doing the checking himself.

The penalty came as a result of David Horst being dragged down inside the box during a deep free kick.

Albert Rusnak dispatched the penalty with almost surprising ease, sending Luis Robles the wrong way and sending a placed shot nearly central in a near-Panenka effort.

Nick Rimando — who looked like he could be struggling with a groin injury or something similar — was forced into two excellent saves near the 30th minute, both of which came from combination play in the box.

Continuing to ail in the second half, with Justen Glad taking his first goal kick of the second 45, Rimando showed no palpable signs of problems when he was called into action to stop another excellent New York opportunity, diving low to keep RSL in a leading position.

Corey Baird nearly made his first RSL appearance an historic one as he nearly chipped NYRB keeper Robles from 30 yards out on a sizzling run in the right channel. Baird found himself consistently involved in positive plays as the second half neared completion.

Corey Baird made his RSL debut as he came on for a struggling Sebastian Saucedo, and Alfredo Ortuño was handed his first start. Luis Silva was originally slated to be on the bench, but a late scratch saw him replaced by Pablo Ruiz.

Starting lineups

Rimando; Lennon, Horst, Glad, Phillips; Beckerman, Kreilach; Saucedo (Baird 66’), Rusnak, Savarino (Mulholland, 90+’); Ortuño (Sunny, 79’)